Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, organizations that provide programs and services for the aging have been challenged with finding new and creative ways to continue their services while keeping the community safe and healthy.
Many organizations are able to stay virtually connected through Zoom, social media, teleconferences, and other technologies and some have been able to hold activities outdoors when possible. However, some organizations were faced with obstacles to help their members socially interact and stay connected to others. These creative new ways to stay connected often involve access to the internet and technology as well as the knowledge of how to use it.
Throughout the county, organizations that serve older adults have worked to continue to offer services without interruption, by offering creative solutions.
A partnership between the Delaware County Office of Services for the Aging (COSA) and Community Transit was forged to assist seniors with their grocery shopping needs. Delaware County Seniors who would like to utilize this service can email grocerydropoff@CTdelco.org or call 215-900-2519.
COSA’s Health and Wellness programs continue to offer education and support to its participants in a virtual setting. To learn more about the programs currently being offered, visit www.delcosa.org and click on the Community Services tab.
The Delaware County Ombudsman Program remains available to residents of long-term care facilities by phone and virtually and will begin outdoor visitation with residents once permitted to do so. Tablets were purchased by the program to train residents in peer resolution through the PEER Program. The Ombudsman Program remains available to advocate for the rights of residents and help to resolve any complaints regarding their rights. The Ombudsman Coordinator, Rahmah Allen, can be reached at 610-872-1868.
Senior Centers in Delaware County offer grab-and-go meals in place of congregate meals. Home delivered meals are available for homebound older adults. To inquire about home-delivered meals or to find a senior center near you, contact COSA at 610-490-1300.
Senior Centers continue to virtually offer live exercise classes, health and wellness programs, lifelong learning programs, support groups, crafting, brain games, discussion groups, and more. Older adults can stay connected through Facebook groups, telephone calls, and e-newsletters. Several centers have lending libraries where the technology to stay connected can be borrowed and some centers are offering classes to older adults who are interested in learning about technology and ways to stay connected.
Activities and programs are not only for center members. Any older adult in Delaware County may participate if interested. To find a senior center near you, contact COSA at 610-490-1300 or visit www.delcosa.orgg to view a list of sponsored centers and their contact information. Activities and programs for each center can be found on their websites.
Visit COSA’s website, www.delcosa.org and click on the News Section to read about other resources available to keep older adults connected such as TechOWL lending library, free and/or low-cost cell phones and internet services, and Villanova University’s ReachOut program offering social phone calls to older adults to help prevent social isolation. Additional details on specific events and programs being offered through sponsored senior centers are listed as well.